Here are your Apple rumors and AAPL news items for today:
More Pixels: Sources tell a Chinese website that an Apple (AAPL) manufacturing partner has developed a number of prototypes for a larger-screen iPad, AppleInsider notes. The bigger tablet is expected to launch next year. Foxconn has reportedly created five different models of the new tablet, which will feature a 12.9-inch screen. Some models include a 2K display, which could be launched early in 2014. Other versions offer a display with 4K ultra-high definition resolution. The 4K models would likely launch later in the year. While the report did not define the 2K resolution, the iPad Air features a screen with 2,048-by-1,536 pixel resolution, which is likely what is being described. Rumors of a larger iPad began to surface earlier this year. Rivals, including Samsung, are said to be developing their own 12-inch tablets. A larger iPad would likely be targeted at educational and enterprise users.
Big Seller: Black Friday was a very good day for Apple’s new flagship tablet, MacRumors notes. A report from Localytics found a 51% jump in iPad Air activations during the weekend that kicked off on the day after Thanksgiving, compared to the previous weekend. By contrast the first-generation iPad Mini saw its activations rise 28% and the new Retina iPad Mini saw its activations climb 17%. Supplies of the Retina iPad Mini remain highly constrained. The data only includes devices activated during the weekend. Activations of the iPhone 5c also surged 26% over the Black Friday weekend, compared to a rise of 15% for the iPhone 5s.
High Praise: In an interview with Beijing News, the CEO of Xiaomi, Lei Jun, called the iPhone “still the best smartphone on the planet,” BGR notes. Jun’s comment is remarkable since his company manufactures smartphones that run Google’s (GOOG) Android operating system. The company produces cheap smartphones that retail across China and is ranked as the fifth largest smartphone maker in the Chinese market. It introduced its first Android phone in 2011. Jun is sometimes described as the “Steve Jobs of China.” He said that “for Xiaomi there’s a lot of space for learning and talent.” Xiaomi also produces a smart TV and a streaming set top box. Apple, which has struggled to retain marketshare in China, is widely expected to soon announce a deal that will bring the iPhone to China Mobile (CHL), which has 700 million subscribers.
For more about the company, check out our previous Apple Rumors stories.